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What Is Reputation Management? Brought to you by:

It's inevitable that people are going to be saying things about your business offline. When somebody says something online about your business – whether good or bad – it's up there for the entire world to see. The comment or review can stay on the Web forever, and it can be accessed at any time, 24/7. If it's on a high-traffic website, it might even come up in the search results before your website does! Reputation management means taking control of your online presence. It refers to a number of different techniques you can do to manage your PR on the Internet. Online, reputation is everything. Before people ever set foot in your business, they're Googling your name to see what others have said about you. Good comments are wonderful, but negative comments can be extremely damaging to your business. Who on Earth Would Want to Hurt MY Business? It's rare that anybody will get online for the express purpose of ruining your good name (although it does happen – just ask Paypal or Wal-mart!). What's more likely to happen is that an unhappy customer who wasn't satisfied with your service posts a review somewhere. They don't mean to do you harm, but just want to warn others. It may be a customer who simply didn't understand your business practices. Maybe

they're complaining and saying that you ripped them off, but actually they didn't read the fine print. Then again, there are just plain meanies who find it easy to spout off online when they're hidden behind a computer screen. In fact, it could even be your competitors, using the Internet to smear you. Negative listings can appear on blogs or websites, or they can be on review websites like Google Search and Yelp. Somebody might say nasty things about you on Facebook or other social media sites. Postings on these high-traffic sites can appear in search engine results for your business's name. What You Can Do About It Reputation management uses a three-pronged strategy to improve a business's image. 1) Getting rid of bad postings, comments and listings. 2) Providing good postings, comments and listings. 3) Monitoring the Web for what's being said about your company. If someone says something rude, insulting, slanderous or inaccurate about your business, you can usually get it removed. You can contact the webmaster or blog owner, and if they don't take it down, contact the web hosting service. For review sites and social media, you can 'flag as inappropriate.' One of the best ways to manage your reputation is to encourage customers to leave good reviews. Go ahead and ask them; they won't mind at all. Only a small percentage will actually follow through and do it, so mention it to everyone. If you have plenty of good reviews online, the bad ones won't look so bad. If you're not taking proactive steps to handle your reputation online right now, you need to start. A negative listing somewhere on the Web might be hurting your business this very moment.

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What Is Reputation Management  

It's rare that anybody will get onlin e for the express purpose of ru i ning your good name (although it does happen just ask Paypa...

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